Q&A Aleksander Aamodt Kilde
Aleksander Aamodt Kilde is the younggun of the Norwegian speed team, walking in the footsteps of his teammates Aksel Lund Svindal and Kjetil Jansrud. After two World Cup wins, seven podiums and a Crystal Globe, the viking is eager to show that he can do more and dreams about the Overall.
Another World Cup season came to an end. All in all, I think you would agree that it was a successful one, finishing 7th of the Overall ranking and 3rd of the super-g and the alpine combined. However, we feel that Aleksander Aamodt Kilde can do more. How do you evaluate your season?
It's been a good season with lots of ups and downs, but my first thought about the season was my stability throughout the winter. With a lot of fourth places I feel like I didn't get out all of my potential, and I think by experiencing that I'll be able to lower my shoulders for the upcoming seasons and maybe do even better.
You made a big step forward in alpine combined this season. In Santa Caterina, you impressed with your slalom skills and grabbed a first World Cup podium in that discipline. Have you been training a lot in slalom? How do you explain this sudden success?
Until starting my World Cup career, I have been focusing a lot on the technical disciplines. Even if I had some more slalom turns than in earlier years, I have to say I surprised myself with my slalom last season. One of the reasons is that I found a good setup on equipment that fit my skiing well.
In an interview in 2013, after claiming the European Cup Overall title, you talked about your goal to be a top level all-rounder, fighting for the World Cup Overall globe. Is this still in the back of your mind? What are the next steps for you to reach that goal?
Being an all-rounder has always been my plan and winning the big globe is for sure my biggest goal. I really hope to achieve that one day. First of all I have to take another step in downhill and giant slalom to have a chance on even fighting for the big globe. So my conclusion is to keep the same pace I have had the last two seasons and try to improve my skiing in all the disciplines and still fighting for the top of the podium especially in super-g.
Giant slalom was you strongest and favorite discipline in the past, you even won the Junior World Championships in GS in 2013. Do you think the new giant slalom skis will make that discipline more accessible for speed skiers again? Have you tried them already? What’s your feeling?
After testing the new GS skis for the first time, my first thought was that GS skiing will be fun again. I think it will be easier for the speed guys to handle the equipment. Since the new cut makes it easier to achieve the optimal curve, the speed guys won't need as many GS training hours than in the past to be able to fight for a top ten position.
At the World Championships in St. Moritz, you earned the ungrateful 4th place twice (in super-g and alpine combined) and finished 6th in the downhill. What was missing to make that last step onto the podium? Were you nervous?
That`s something I've been thinking about many times after the World Championships, and if the answers were easy, I would have done something about it right away. But, I know I had some mistakes during the races which costed me two podiums and I think experience is the only way to handle this problem. I was for sure nervous, but nothing unusual.
Another big event is ahead this season: PyeongChang 2018. With a solid 4th place in the super-g at the test event in 2016, the expectations are high. What’s your mind set going into those Olympic Games? Will your preparation be any different?
I'm not thinking about the upcoming season as anything different. I have to do the same preparations to be able to achieve my goals, both on the World Cup and at the Olympics. It would not be wise to do any big changes. However, with even more experience, I will be able to do a bit better on all the details and minimize the mistakes during the races.
You are known and recognized as one of the fittest athlete on the World Cup Tour. Summer is high season for dryland and you train together with your teammates. What’s your secret to be so strong? Is there anything you do differently than the others?
I started out very young focusing on physical training and versatility. This has given me a solid physical base and the possibility to develop my strength throughout the years. It's hard for me to know if I'm doing anything different than the others, especially those from other countries, but I know I'm pretty much doing everything the same as the other guys on my team, although I always try to give the little extra!